Gynecologic Oncology Reports (Aug 2022)

Increased disparities associated with black women and abnormal cervical cancer screening follow-up

  • Teresa K.L. Boitano,
  • Peter Ketch,
  • Julia G. Maier,
  • Christine T. Nguyen,
  • Warner K. Huh,
  • J. Michael Straughn,
  • Isabel C. Scarinci

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 42
p. 101041


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Background: To determine whether race and ethnicity impacts patient adherence to follow-up for colposcopy after abnormal cervical cancer screening. Methods: This retrospective chart review included women that were randomly selected from patients presenting to our colposcopy clinic from 1/2019 to 12/2019. Inclusion criteria were females age ≥21 years-old and appropriate referral for colposcopy. Patients were grouped into three categories: (1) ADHERENT to follow-up if they came to their first scheduled appointment; (2) DELAYED if they presented more than three months from their original referral (usually missing 1–3 appointments); and (3) NOT ADHERENT if they did not show for their appointment after referral. Analysis was performed using SPSS v.26. Results: 284 women met inclusion criteria for the study. The majority of women were Black (65.2 %) followed by non-Hispanic Whites (20.0 %) and Latinx (14.8 %). Overall, 39.1 % were ADHERENT, 18.6 % were DELAYED, and 42.3 % were NOT ADHERENT. When compared with non-Hispanic White women, there was a significant difference between race/ethnicity and timing of follow-up (p = 0.03). Blacks were more likely to be NOT ADHERENT (45.9 %; p = 0.03), and Latinx and Blacks were the most likely to be DELAYED (35.7 % and 21.1 %; p = 0.03). Private insurance patients were more likely to be ADHERENT for care compared with un-/underinsured patients (78.9 vs 27.8 %, p = 0.0001). Conclusion: There is inadequate follow-up after abnormal cervical cancer screening across all races/ethnicities; however, lack of adherence is higher in Black patients. Moreover, 25% of Hispanic and Black women present in a delayed fashion. Culturally relevant assessments and interventions are needed to understand and address these gaps.